Not Kidding

by Chelsey Clammer I’m not the first person to say “fuck kids.” Not fuck in any sort of physical action way, because that’s just fucked up. No other way to look at that. “Fuck kids” as in pa-shaw. I got other shit to do than tell another human being they’re doing the whole life thing wrong, to taint their experience of what it means to be a person by doing something that’s really fucked up like telling them what they can and cannot do, and that I—because my body has been breathing longer than theirs—know how life is to be … Continue reading Not Kidding

Old City Homecoming

by Yi Wu I am the seed that opened its eyes upon the dawn Spread by dark blue buses traversing through And breathing at their rear the darkened air of a disquieting night’s Vacillation between insomnia and sleeping too deeply I am the seed that was returned to my home known for beds green and brown Spread out across tens of miles with a roof baby blue And everyone drank the juice and ate fallen pieces of one another And days prior news from social media tells me Some of my family and friends moved too quickly in circles And … Continue reading Old City Homecoming

Manic Pixie Dragon Queen

by Audrey El-Osta I in my tweed cocoon, I cradle honeysoy chai chased with black ciggies gazing out to a tramlined horizon. She emerges genteel, yet bouncing off rubber clouds of airflex souls. an unlabelable belle, I see her everywhere: café, tramstop, bookshop, jazz club. I wonder what on earth could be going on in that pretty little head as she reads her poetry I cast my line, entertain my Romantic desires. I hear her laugh; it’s a nightingale song. II He takes me to that stupid movie with the sad white girl in it, you know the one, there’s … Continue reading Manic Pixie Dragon Queen

Terror LLC 

by William Ables The Hangman’s Tree was my masterpiece. It was my Sistine Chapel, my Pietà, my Big Mac. They said there could be nothing frightening about a tree. The trunk was a broken husk, I twisted it, freezing it in a moment expressing pain. They said a tree was pure, not unsettling. I spun its branches out, sprouting them like grave gnarled fingers. They said a tree was worshiped, a symbol of sustenance. I crafted an opera of arboreal horror. I was hailed as a genius, I was celebrated as the next great thing in Terror. Everyone wanted to know … Continue reading Terror LLC 

Daughter’s Prayer

by Carolyn Elias I told you I hated you and I smiled  when I heard you crying on the toilet. It was revenge  for the three birthdays  you forgot to call because you were busy doin’ time.  Revenge for gawky neighbors eyeballin’ me ‘cause they knew you were no good and when their whispers settled in your ears we’d move on to another scummy apartment with revolving boyfriend’s air mattresses. New place, new smile. This time. This time. This time you’d do better at the next con on the next john I prayed every time  would be the last time. … Continue reading Daughter’s Prayer